Railroad Strike would take huge toll on the Supply Chain

Revelations 18:23 ‘For the merchants were the great men of the earth; for by thy sorceries were all nations deceived.’

Important Takeaways:

  • Brace for Economic Shockwaves and Empty Shelves as Railroad Strike and New Energy Spike Could Hit Hard
  • More than 100,000 railroad workers are threatening to walk off their jobs this week over worker pay, health care, and other issues.
  • Unions are now negotiating with the nation’s biggest freight railroads, including Union Pacific, CSX, Norfolk Southern, BNSF, and Kansas City Southern, and have announced eight of the 13 tentative agreements needed to avert a strike.
  • The deals that have been announced so far have closely followed the Presidential Emergency Board’s recommendations that called for 24% raises over five years, $5,000 in bonuses and one additional paid leave day a year. But the two biggest unions representing conductors and engineers have been holding out because they want the railroads to go beyond those recommendations and address some of their concerns about strict attendance policies and working conditions.
  • If a deal is not made, then passenger service, supply chains, and jobs could be affected, costing the economy an estimated $2 billion per day.
  • Bloomberg explains the impact on the supply chain would be huge because trains transport 28% of all U.S. freight.

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Supply Chain Crisis as Port of Oakland is shut down by protests over new law that could slash workers earnings

Revelations 18:23:’For the merchants were the great men of the earth; for by thy sorceries were all nations deceived.’

Important Takeaways:

  • California’s Port of Oakland shuts for a THIRD day in dispute over California’s gig worker law: Supply chain crisis is now set to WORSEN as stranded container ships aren’t able to berth
  • Truckers have shut down the Port of Oakland in protest of Assembly Bill 5 (AB5)
  • Hundreds picketed gates on Wednesday and blocked drivers from hauling cargo
  • As a result, port productivity has diminished and container wait times have risen
  • Pot officials warn continued protests will exacerbate supply-chain issues
  • Organizers say protests will continue until Gov. Newsom agrees to meet
  • AB5 sets tougher standards for classifying workers as independent contractors
  • Protesters fear the law will impose hefty costs that will slash their earnings

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Supply Chain issues continue. Livestock Producers running out of feed

Rev 6:6 NAS “And I heard something like a voice in the center of the four living creatures saying, “A quart of wheat for a denarius, and three quarts of barley for a denarius; and do not damage the oil and the wine.”

Important Takeaways:

  • Livestock Producers Report Being Just Days Away From Running Out of Feed Due to Shipping Rail Issues
  • Rail bottlenecks in the U.S. are not improving, and in some cases, growing more severe. Feed users in California and the Southwest are having issues sourcing grain, with some reporting they are paying $3 over the CBOT price to secure grain by truck. Not only are feed users on the brink of running out of grain, but there are also concerns the rail issues could grow worse during harvest this fall.
  • According to Trains.com, Foster Farms, the largest chicken producer in the western U.S., asked federal regulators to issue an emergency service order last week that would direct Union Pacific to prioritize corn shipments that thousands of dairy cattle and millions of chickens and turkeys depend upon.
  • While a combination of weather, supply chain issues and other factors are creating the severe scenario, the main issue seems to revolve around labor.

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Another Supply Chain problem: 70,000 truckers could be off the road after Supreme Court denies judicial review

Rev 6:6 NAS “And I heard something like a voice in the center of the four living creatures saying, “A quart of wheat for a denarius, and three quarts of barley for a denarius; and do not damage the oil and the wine.”

Important Takeaways:

  • US Court Ruling May Take 70,000 Truckers Off Road, Spur Jams
  • “Gasoline has been poured on the fire that is our ongoing supply-chain crisis,” the California Trucking Association said in a statement following the Supreme Court’s decision to deny a judicial review of a decision of a lower court, a process known as certiorari.
  • The association asked the Supreme Court for a review of a case challenging California’s Assembly Bill 5, a law that sets out three tests to determine whether a worker is an employee entitled to job benefits or an independent contractor who isn’t. The trucking industry relies on contractors, and has fought to be exempt from state regulations for years because of federal law.
  • [So by not reviewing the bill] could force California’s 70,000 truck owner-operators to stop driving is set to create another choke point in already-stressed West Coast logistics networks, a truckers’ organization said.

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Shortages in the Supply Chain affecting Insulin

FILE PHOTO: Insulin supplies are pictured in the Manhattan borough of New York City, New York, U.S., January 18, 2019. REUTERS/Carlo Allegri

Rev 6:6 NAS “And I heard something like a voice in the center of the four living creatures saying, “A quart of wheat for a denarius, and three quarts of barley for a denarius; and do not damage the oil and the wine.”

Important Takeaways:

  • Insulin shortage might be next supply chain crisis
  • According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention there are 37.3 million people with diabetes in the U.S. which is 11 percent of the U.S. population. An additional 96 million over the age of 18 have prediabetes. 7.4 million Americans with diabetes use one or more formulations of insulin and this number is growing. Unfortunately, the insulin supply is not. Just the opposite, in fact.
  • The FDA announced just before the pandemic started, in February, 2020, that there was going to be a drug shortage including insulin due to the initial COVID outbreak in China. Insulin prices have skyrocketed 600 percent in the past 20 years, and at least three states, California, Washington, and Maine, have been passing legislation with the intention of producing their own insulin
  • The insulin supply chain involves the delivery of insulin to patients and the flow of payments back. There are multiple middlemen that clog up the chain, and the monopolies of the three major companies involved, Novo Nordisk, Sanofi, and Eli Lilly, is part of the problem, as it is with baby formula.
  • The solution is multi-faceted and it includes more generics, biosimilars, public production, federal reserve, management algorithms and slow replacement of insulin with newer drugs which both help control diabetes and also decrease hunger and weight, a handy “two-for” which decreases insulin requirements

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Experts warn Power Grid is under strain “reliability is going to be difficult

Important Takeaways:

  • Vast swath of U.S. at risk of summer blackouts, regulator warns
  • A vast swath of North America from the Great Lakes to the West Coast is at risk of blackouts this summer as heat, drought, shuttered power plants and supply-chain woes strain the electric grid.
  • A historic drought is covering the western US, limiting supplies of hydroelectric power, and forecasts call for a hotter-than-average summer. But the fight against global warming poses its own risks as older coal-fired plants close faster than wind farms, solar facilities and batteries can replace them.
  • “The pace of our grid transformation is out of sync” with the physical realities of the existing power network, Moura said.
  • Supply-chain snags, meanwhile, are delaying Southwest solar projects and Texas transmission lines, while coal plants are having trouble obtaining fuel amid increased exports. And power grids face a growing threat of cyberattacks because of US support for Ukraine following the Russian invasion, according to NERC.
  • California’s grid operators, in contrast, have warned that the state faces a risk of blackouts during the next three summers as the state shifts to cleaner energy.
  • “We know that reliability is going to be difficult in this time of transition,” said Alice Reynolds, president of the California Public Utilities Commission

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Short supply of Diesel on the heels of summer

Rev 6:6 NAS “And I heard something like a voice in the center of the four living creatures saying, “A quart of wheat for a denarius, and three quarts of barley for a denarius; and do not damage the oil and the wine.”

Important Takeaways:

  • Diesel fuel is in short supply as prices surge — Here’s what that means for inflation
  • Diesel fuel is in short supply as demand rebounds following the pandemic, while supply remains tight.
  • Prices have surged to record levels, adding to inflationary concerns across the economy.
  • The problem is especially acute on the East Coast, where prices have become “unhinged,” according to one analyst.
  • “Diesel is the fuel that powers the economy,” said Patrick De Haan, head of petroleum analysis at GasBuddy
  • Higher prices are “certainly going to translate into more expensive goods,” said De Haan.

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Surge in Corn Prices Hit Nine Year High

Rev 6:6 NAS And I heard something like a voice in the center of the four living creatures saying, “A quart of wheat for a denarius, and three quarts of barley for a denarius; and do not damage the oil and the wine.”

Important Takeaways:

  • Price of corn hits 9-year high as surge in commodities continues
  • The contracts for July corn futures were trading above $8 per bushel on Monday, the highest level since September 2012.
  • Corn is just one of several agriculture commodities that has seen surging prices in recent weeks, in part due to the war in Ukraine.
  • Even prior to the war, agricultural commodities were seeing some upward pressure supply chain disruptions and high transportation costs that are contributing to inflation throughout the economy.

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500 Ships stuck outside Shanghai as Supply Chain Issues ramp up

Rev 6:6 NAS And I heard something like a voice in the center of the four living creatures saying, “A quart of wheat for a denarius, and three quarts of barley for a denarius; and do not damage the oil and the wine.”

Important Takeaways:

  • China’s strict Covid restrictions are causing global supply chain issues
  • Blockages in global trade have surged due to their highest level since last September. The delay has been caused mostly by coronavirus restrictions in one of the country’s busiest ports – Shanghai.
  • “The main development of March is the reappearance of shipping congestion in the ports of Asia and the North Sea,” Liberum analyst Joachim Klement told The Telegraph.
  • According to data from Bloomberg, almost 500 ships were stuck outside Shanghai.

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Supply Chain problems are affecting Baby Formula suppliers

Rev 6:6 NAS And I heard something like a voice in the center of the four living creatures saying, “A quart of wheat for a denarius, and three quarts of barley for a denarius; and do not damage the oil and the wine.”

Important Takeaways:

  • Supply chain crisis: ‘Shocking’ national baby formula shortage forces rationing at major retail chain
  • The supply chain crisis has prompted Walgreens – the second-largest pharmacy store chain in the United States behind CVS – to limit the amount of baby formula that customers can purchase.
  • The reason for rationing is because of “increased demand and various supplier issues.” The restrictions are already in effect at stores.
  • CVS is also experiencing baby formula shortages.

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